Every copywriter has a process they like to follow. This is mine.
Our first conversations
Our first step will be to have a conversation to see if we’re a good fit for each other. The key things we’ll need to discuss are:
- the ‘big picture’ view of your project
- when you’d like to start the work
- your deadline
- your ballpark budget.
If we aren’t a good fit for each other for whatever reason, I’ll try to recommend an alternative copywriter or solution.
If we feel we’re a good fit, we’ll continue the conversation so I can gather enough information to put together a proposal for you.
My proposal recaps our discussions, scopes the project and confirms the price and start dates. Assuming everything looks OK, I’ll send you a copy of my contract. Once you’ve signed it, that secures space in my schedule.
Briefing and research
The next stage is to gather all the information I need to start work. Essentially, assume that all information is good information. It’s far better for me to have too much information than too little. I love to see any or all of the following:
- market information
- target customer information
- customer feedback
- competitor information
- existing marketing literature
- pricing information
- marketing and business plans.
I‘ll certainly need to interview you in more depth and I may need to interview other members of your team. A tour of your premises is valuable. The gold standard will be to interview your customers too, although this will depend on your budget.
If we’re working on a project like a website, it’s always useful to work as a team including the web designer and anyone else who’ll be involved. Copy doesn’t work in a vacuum, so it’s good to have inclusive discussions.
Once I’ve gathered all the information, it’s time for me to start work. If we’re working on a large project, I’ll work on a small section of it first then send it to you for review. It saves us both time to know we’re both thinking along the same lines. Once we’re happy we’re on the right track, I’ll continue writing and send you a complete first draft ready for your feedback.
I work in Microsoft Word so will typically send you drafts in Word format. But I have clients who prefer other platforms, so I can send content in Pages or Google Docs or anything else if that makes your life easier.
I include two rounds of amends in my price to give you confidence that we’ve got scope to get things right. That said, the nature of the briefing and research stage means that the first draft should be (and usually is) pretty close to what’s required.
Once you’re happy with the copy, it’s time for it to go to design. At this stage, I’ll be on hand to work with your design team to make sure copy and design sit together perfectly to give the strongest possible result.
A few months after we complete a project, I like to check in to find out how things are going. If you have any metrics to share, I love to see them. It’s important to me to know that my work is delivering results.
Throughout, you can expect me to be:
- Practical: I’ll call when I say I will; I’ll deliver when I say I will. My job is to help you and your business, so you can rely on me to be reliable.
- Pragmatic: I’ll always be able to back up anything I’ve recommended or written with best practice knowledge and sound thinking. That said, you’re the customer and you know your business. I’m not diva-ish or precious.
- Proactive: you’re engaging me to write copy but I’ll always go the extra mile to work with you and your team to add value and offer suggestions, ideas and feedback where it’s appropriate.
- Professional: if I need to talk to a customer or supplier of yours, you can put me in touch with them without fear. I work hard to make a good impression and reflect well on you and your company.